One Hundred Two
It was probably the most distasteful thing he could remember having to do in his entire adult life. Marcus Taggert silently followed the gurney bearing the body of Sonny Corinthos and tried not to think about what awaited them at the end of their short journey.
A blast of hot air assaulted Marcus as he stepped into the furnace room. A faint aroma of death delicately filled his nostrils and he unconsciously held his breath.
“Grab his feet,” the mortician directed his assistant, after sweeping away the pristine white sheet that covered Sonny's body. The two men effortlessly transferred the mobster's naked body feet-first onto the conveyor belt that led into the state of the art furnace.
“There's nothing left but to begin the cremation,” the mortician informed Marcus.
Marcus held the other man's gaze. “Then begin it,” he instructed calmly. He did not miss the look of surprise that crossed the mortician's face. Marcus did not blame the man.
The mortician walked over and flipped the switch that started the conveyor belt moving. Marcus watched the body move forward until the superheated flames began to lick at his half-brother's feet.
“I am going to get some air.”
Marcus shook away the unpleasant memory. “I guess that's another thing I have to thank you for.” He glared at the marble headstone and felt his anger rise up anew. “For the rest of my life I am gonna have that picture in my head.” Even as he said the words, Marcus was bombarded by the mental image of Sonny's flesh burning away from his feet.
“You were a pitiful excuse for a father.” Marcus spit the words as though Mike Corbin could feel the anger that resonated from them. “It's ironic, you know. Even though I only found out that you were my father weeks ago, I was angry at you over how easily you used my mother and then just walked away from me. But now I've got a tin can in my truck full of what's left of the kid you ruined and all I can do is be grateful that you were such a coward and stayed out of my life.”
“A bunch of people are dead because you didn't do your job as a father. But I can't blame it all on you. Sonny made his choices and he's paid for them.” Marcus squatted down beside Mike's grave. He plucked a flower from the dying arrangement so carefully propped against the ornate marble headstone and began to absently shred the wilted blossom.
“Someday my kids are going to stand at my grave like I'm standing here. And more than anything I want them to be able to say that their father was a man of principles, a man of his word.”
“That's exactly the kind of man I'm looking for,” a rich Aussie brogue behind Marcus said. The stranger stuck out a hand. “I'm Robert Scorpio, mate, and I'm looking for a partner to help me rid this town of Anthony Sorrell.”